In our latest series of leadership quotations, we hear from Ewen Stevenson on banks charging customers for basic services, from Rishi Sunak on the government’s plans for the North, from Emma Marshall on the bureaucracy facing accountancy firms, from Ghulam Mustafa on the regulation burden in the property sector, and from Marius Foster on the effects of the government’s decision to ban agency fees.
‘We will have to look at charging for basic banking services in some markets, because a large number of our customers will be losing us money.’ (HSBC’s Group CFO on the potential end of free accounts).
‘I absolutely share my colleagues' frustration at restrictions. Of course that's frustrating if you're having to live under these things and you want to know when it's going to be over. But I also share their passion and ambition for the North. I want my constituents to make sure they have the same opportunities that everyone else does. The conversation can't always just be about what's going on in London, marvellous as London is.’ (The chancellor of the exchequer in response to 50 backbench Tory MPs setting up the Northern Research Group to ensure the North is not left behind)
‘With each week that passes, we find ourselves under more and more scrutiny and pressure by way of burgeoning local and central bureaucracy. We want to spend more time adding value to clients’ businesses by growing them and contributing more to the economy, and this is presently being stifled by the ever-increasing amount of regulatory red tape we have to wade through.’ (The Marshall & Co founder on the struggles accountancy firms face as a result of red tape).
‘The mandatory introduction of licensing fees and document verification to the letting sector have proven to be both costly and time-consuming. For larger companies, overcoming these obstacles may be easier – they may have more resources at their disposal, or even a dedicated compliance department. As a small family-run business, we struggle with the wealth of new legislation imposed on the lettings sector every year.’ (The London Accommodation Centre director on the regulation burden in the property sector)
‘Letting agents have legitimate costs when setting up a tenancy agreement, such as referencing tenants, credit checks, right to rent checks and check-ins at the property. Like any business, costs need to be borne. If these costs are not passed on to the landlord, it means financial cutbacks from letting agents, which would impact the service to tenants and landlords alike. If costs are passed on to landlords, the risk is that this could force landlords to unwillingly self-manage their properties, which could lead to much wider implications.’ (The John Hilton Estate Agents director on the downside of the government’s decision to ban agency fees).
‘It’s about time that governments actually recognise what a great job the travel and tourism industry is doing in controlling the spread of the virus.’ (The CEO of Dubai Airports responding to news of discussions over a quarantine-free travel arrangement between the UK and Dubai)